Excellent query. Nothing specific from an automated point of view, but below are some human-in-the-loop reflections.
1. Integrity & intelligence are the foundation for any unit to be sustainably prosperous. If the leadership lacks integrity & intelligence (holistic decision-support), the unit will be bankrupted by the few against the many. A commitment to full employment and the eradication of corruption including financial speculation is part of the deal.
2. Elementary education needs to be recast back to the basics–reading at a very high level, writing at a very coherent fluid level, and arithmetic. Add to this full orientations to tools for thinking.
3. The time may have come to restore apprenticeships, with ALL students serving apprenticeships in the trades during their high school years, earning while they learn.
4. High school could be, should be, like a Boy Scout Merit Badge process, with enormous choice, team learning, online learning, community service, and a huge emphasis on the culture of diversity and dialog. Memorization does have a big role to play–the prepared mind does better with new information if the basics are firmly rooted. Music and arts needs to be co-equal to sciences and social sciences at this stage–they help develop creative thinking skills.
5. Universal service for all between high school and college, with a second universal service at mid-career, is an essential means of both physically conditioning the population and bonding the population. It should consist of three months of universal training in the arts of war and peace including disaster relief, followed by eighteen months as a volunteer to the Armed Services or Peace Corps, or assignment to Homeland Service.
6. Credentialing must be killed, we do this with challenge testing where the credential can be earned at no cost from state universities with proof of learning by testing. Colleges need to flip from lecture to a mix of online learning of the lecture material, and in-person workshops, team learning, and exploration.
7. Knowledge must be re-integrated, and education, intelligence (decision-support), and research also reintegrated. Much greater use can be made of college apprenticeships across the professions and the disciplines, striving to create a “hive mind” rather than disciplinary and professional cults.
At root, education has been allowed to become a factory process of credentialing rather than a social process of learning and skill development. It is going to take at least one generation to fix this. The good news is that the best and the brightest have figured this out, mentally dropped out of high school, and are busy allocating their time in ways that are more useful to them. We need to support their instincts rather than penalize them.
All reviewed books categories as relevant to education: